COLUMBIA, S.C. – Two correctional officers are recovering Friday after being injured by inmates rioting at a prison in Richland County, Sheriff Leon Lott said.
The incident began just after 8 a.m. at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center. Inmates in a pod housing about 50 people attacked a pair of guards before the guards were able to escape, the sheriff said.
“They’re injured. We’re addressing their injuries right now,” he said, adding that no inmates were wounded. “Our thoughts and prayers are with both of them for a full recovery, but we’re very fortunate this morning that we did not have more people severely injured.”
He said officials have since recovered at least one weapon, a shank. The wounded officers, who were not identified, suffered injuries that did not appear to be life-threatening.
“They’re going to survive,” the sheriff said. “When you have something like this, not only do you have the physical injuries, (but) you have the mental injuries on the fact that you just got attacked by multiple inmates and you were at their mercy for a while.”
Authorities responded to the jail around 8:25 a.m., after which Lott said inmates returned to their cells and locked themselves inside. He said officials were going cell-by-cell and removing inmates while investigators worked to determine who participated in the riot.
“(There were) no issues, no resistance once we got there,” Lott said. “We used a show of force. We wanted to make sure that they knew that we were not playing, and we were not playing. They’d already injured two of the guards here, correctional officers, and we were not going to let anybody else get injured.”
Officials with the fire department also responded to the scene in case deputies deployed gas to diffuse the situation, although Lott said authorities ultimately did not need to take that step.
“The riot is over,” the sheriff said. “Everybody’s safe. No other correctional officers are in danger, nobody else is in danger at this point. … The Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center officers are in charge now. The inmates do not control this jail.”
Authorities continue to investigate.
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